HONOLULU (KHON2) — The stage is set for Hawaii’s own to win American Idol. William Tongi, who goes by Iam, has made it to the final five and the show has told Hawaii to start preparing for a big homecoming celebration next week if he makes the top three.

KHON2 News caught up with Tongi’s friends and family on Oahu this weekend.

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His family said Tongi’s third-grade teacher gave him ukulele lessons at Kahuku Elementary School, and his dad bought him a guitar shortly after.

“After that, we didn’t see him without it, he always had it with him,” said his aunt Kristin Tuifua.

He would even play at school, when the teachers would tell him to put it away.

“He wouldn’t listen and he would play again and again, in the hallways, outside,” said Leialoha Mataalii, who has been a substitute teacher at Kahuku for 15 years.

“And look at where his music has gotten him today,” she added.

The Kahuku native’s family left Hawaii four years ago because they could no longer afford to live here.

“A lot of people get priced out, it’s not an easy place to live, you have to make a lot of sacrifices so they moved to Seattle to see if it would be easier,” Tuifua added.

“Rodney [Tongi’s dad] knew he would do better with music over there, he would be able to get more recordings and stuff like that and it worked,” said Tongi’s aunty Cynthia Channels.

On Sunday, Tongi made it to the Top 5.

Next Sunday, the top three will be announced.

The shows’ producers reached out to State Senator, and Red Raider alum, Brenton Awa (R) Kaneohe, Kahuku, Kunia, and asked if he could get a homecoming ready in about a week in hopes Tongi makes it to the top three.

With no budget provided from Idol, Sen. Awa put the call out on social media on Saturday.

“This is our kuleana to do this, and we put out the message and man there has been overwhelming support,” Awa said.

He said the community stepped up offering lights, sound systems, and even venues.

He said the city has discussed waving fees for Waikiki Shell, and possibly hosting a homecoming concert next week there. But late Sunday afternoon, Turtle Bay Resort, a destination much closer to home in Kahuku, offered up its venue. Awa said North Shore Stables in Waialua also offered their space too.

“Idol is really respectful of the community and they want this parade to be on North Shore, whether it’s Kaaawa to Sunset area we don’t have all the details yet, but they want it to be in Kahuku at minimum,” Awa added.

On Sunday, close friends and family rooted loud and proud for Tongi and received several honks from cars driving by in support of the hometown hero.

His family stated his biggest support is coming from above.

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“His dad always wanted him to be on American Idol so he made his dad’s dream come true,” Channels said. “And the dad is looking down at him smiling and he just loved Iam and so proud of how far he’s come.”